Stop treating marijuana like heroin | READER COMMENTARY
For The Baltimore Sun|
Apr 22, 2021 at 9:42 AM
Like the emergence of cicadas, every 17 years is about how often I find myself agreeing with The Baltimore Sun editorial board. But I admit the editorial on legal and medical cannabis was mainly on target (”In Maryland, legal marijuana is already here — for some,” April 19). The entire medical cannabis industry is simply a ruse to sell weed legally. In fact, in Maryland, one does not even have to see a doctor to get the prized medical card. Just ring up your local cannabis counselor. It can all be completed on the phone. Be sure to chose an ailment from the accepted list on the Maryland Medical Cannabis website, pay the hefty fees, and get your card. So yes, it takes money. Lots of fees. Yearly phone appointments with your counselor for $100 or so.
I live in a large county that runs the entire distance of Maryland’s Atlantic Ocean coastline. Although Worcester stretches from the Delaware line to the Virginia line, I have to drive 60 miles round trip to get to one of the only two cannabis dispensaries in my county. Both are located in West Ocean City. We know that all the sick people needing weed don’t all live in Ocean City, yet both dispensaries are just a mile or two from each other. Face it: People party in OC and all those visitors “down the ocean” want to have local access to weed. The ruse is comical.
According to the state website, Maryland is predicted to do $450 million this year in cannabis sales based on only 39 dispensaries in the state. So much suffering and so much relief with cannabis. Let’s call it the little lie.
We don’t need a national policy as the editorial board suggested. That would be asking too much. We just need the primary branch of the federal government to remove cannabis from the list of Schedule 1 drugs, where it now resides along with heroin. As Congress dithers, states have been forced to use the medical ruse as a back door opening for the industry. Secondly, we need the state to move to fully legalize cannabis so that all Marylanders have equal access without having to ante up several hundred dollars to get the prized “medical” card.